I HAD one in 1996. It clipped onto the belt of my 28-inch waist. It looked cool and trendy. Hearing a beep beep meant I’d received a message. A quick look at the screen revealed a message like give uncle Byron a call.
23 years later, there’s no device clipped to the belt of my 32-inch waist. If someone wants to talk to me, I’d be alerted by the default Apple ringtone and reach into my pocket (funnily enough, others in close proximity will also reach into their pockets when an iPhone rings). If someone sends me a text message, I’ll usually text them back pretty sharpish.
So where did the relationship with the Pager and I break down? We really had a good thing going back in 1996. We didn’t argue or fight. We spent lots of time together with no disagreements between us. Her name was Cello. When someone wanted to get hold of me, they’d call my pager number, which took them through to a real person on the switchboard. The message was left with the switchboard operator who’d then relay the message in text form to my pager, Cello. It worked well. It was reliable and didn’t need charging every day. No frills, bells or whistles.
So how did the relationship end? What did Cello do to make me put her in a box, then lock her in the cobweb-ridden loft? Well I learned a lot about myself back in the 90s. When it comes to technology, I’m a fickle guy. I spotted another model that could do a bit more than my Cello. Her name was Nokia 1620 – a mobile phone. Now that I had a mobile phone, I could make phonecalls whist out and about. I didn’t need to hunt down a phonebox or wait until I got home to call someone. I remember the first ever text message I received on my mobile phone – I was so scared and thought it was the work of the devil. After realizing that the evil one was innocent, I began to enjoy the features of my new model. It’s not the only time I’ve been unfaithful; I’ve been unfaithful on average every two years since Cello.
Being unfaithful is widely recognised and accepted
The reassuring thing is that I’m not the only unfaithful one. During a shopping trip on Friday morning, I spotted huge queue outside the Apple store. This was no ordinary queue – this queue needed security guards to keep things under control. I realized that all the fuss was over the release of the new iPhone. I felt reassured seeing hundreds of people queuing for the latest model. I realized that the people queuing were barefaced cheaters, showing the same degree of disloyalty as me!
I’m not sure where my Cello pager ended up. I’m not sure where the Nokia 1620 ended up either. I’m not sure where all the other devices were dumped off over the years. Still for now I’m happy with my iPhone 6. I love it and can’t live without it. I’ve had it for about 24 months. It’s trouble-free and does the job. 24 months … maybe it’s time for a trip to the Apple store.
Enjoyed the blog? A nostalgic collection of blogs featuring a fun and factual look back at British advertising, leisure and entertainment from the 70s and 80s are featured in the new hardback book, Section N Underpass. Get the rundown here by clicking the front cover below: